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Interactive simulation of clouds based on fluid dynamics

  • The goal of this thesis was to develop an interactive cloud simulation based on physical laws from fluid and cloud dynamics that can be used to visualize the physical processes involved in the cloud formation process. Chapter 2 showed that a great number of cloud modeling methods already exist, both procedural and physically motivated. Since the simulation developed in this thesis is based on computational fluid dynamics, the most influential works in this field in relation to computer graphics were also identified. Next, the cloud formation process in the atmosphere was explained, demonstrating the connections between air pressure, temperature and humidity. The temperature distribution of the atmosphere was identified as the most significant factor in cloud formation, before two different kinds of cloud classifications were introduced. The following chapter was dedicated to formulating the previously described cloud formation process in terms of physics. It presented the Navier- Stokes equations of incompressible fluid motion as the method of describing the movement of air masses in the atmosphere and explained how they can be simplified. Furthermore, this chapter was used to introduce concepts from thermodynamics that are necessary for the description of cloud dynamics, and to present a water continuity model that defines the state changes of water in the atmosphere. It was also explained where and how the presented concepts abstract from reality. In chapter 5, it was first described how the cloud model was developed based on the concepts evaluated before, identifying the temperature, water vapor, cloud water, and velocity as the state variables necessary for a cloud simulation. Next, the unconditionally stable implicit semi-Lagrangian method for the solution of the Navier-Stokes equation was presented, and it was explained how the equations for the water continuity, latent heat, and buoyant force computations are solved. All the steps were then summarized and put into context by describing the simulation loop that is executed for every step of the cloud simulation. In the following, details were given about the simple rendering method for the clouds, and the visualization methods for the velocity field and the temperature were evaluated. Finally, the user interface that controls the parameters of the simulation was explained. Chapter six showed the results of the simulation of convective and stratus clouds and commented on the performance of the system.

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Author:Oliver Koehler
Referee:Stefan Müller
Document Type:Diploma Thesis
Date of completion:2009/10/12
Date of publication:2009/10/12
Publishing institution:Universität Koblenz-Landau, Campus Koblenz, Universitätsbibliothek
Granting institution:Universität Koblenz, Fachbereich 4
Release Date:2009/10/12
Tag:Fluiddynamik; Wolkensimulation
Number of pages:v, 54
Institutes:Fachbereich 4 / Institut für Computervisualistik
Dewey Decimal Classification:0 Informatik, Informationswissenschaft, allgemeine Werke / 00 Informatik, Wissen, Systeme / 004 Datenverarbeitung; Informatik
Licence (German):License LogoEs gilt das deutsche Urheberrecht: § 53 UrhG